Tuesday, June 26, 2007

Hriatpuia reciting his verses



Sweet little cousin

Nagaland Visit

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Kohima is located on the top of a high ridge and the town serpentines all along the top of the surrounding mountain ranges as is typical of most Naga settlements

- 2nd British Division Memorial cemetery with the famous inscription
When You Go Home, Tell Them Of Us And Say,
For Their Tomorrow, We Gave Our Today

This verse is attributed to John Maxwell Edmonds (1875 -1958), and is thought to have been inspired by the epitaph written by Simonides to honour the Greek who fell at the Battle of Thermopylae (300 the movie) in 480 BC.

there's 1 mizo soldier's grave too.
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Naga's are basically distributed into 2 areas - the one's residing in Nagaland and Manipur, the tribes in Nagaland - Ao, Lotha, Chakesang, Angami are relatively better off with better facilities BUT

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the Naga's in Manipur- Tangkhul are relatively neglected as they live in a state dominated by the Majority - Meitei's. Infrastructure - roads, electricity is bad in Manipur probably because of the heavy extortion by underground elements on whatever development projects that are there in the state.

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Nagaland has very good soil and they've got lots of very beautiful terraces, the Angami and Chakesang tribes in the Kohima district use terracing and irrigation techniques around the Village, most of the villages have a gate leading to the village.

Churachandpur, Manipur

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Birds eye view of Churachandpur, which is the 2nd largest town in Manipur. It has a population of about 50,000 people

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View of the town from prayer hill

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Churachandpur is inhabited by several tribes, mainly belonging to the Kuki-Zomi-Mizo group, with the Paite , Hmar, Thado, Zou , Vaiphei, Gangte, Simte, Mizo ,TedimChin, and some Manipuri Meiteis.

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The streets

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Another View of the town - Churachandpur is a beautiful town but a very unsafe town as there are lot of underground outfits, the town itself is divided into different ethnic zones like - Mizo, Hmar, Kuki, Paite and even minor scuffles can bring about problems between communities as it happened during the Zomi-Kuki ethnic clash (1997-98). There were also very few established business as building of a property or investment into a bigger business would only invite more money from the underground elements who control life there by the tip of the gun.

Monday, June 25, 2007

Imphal, Manipur visit

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Our vehicle,the white bolero, had to wait till six pm even though we arrived earlier to enter Imphal because of inter -ethnic trouble between the meitei and Kuki community. Because of the rich diversity of different languages, there's a lot of infighting within the states, hardly any cops in Imphal itself but all army guys. 11 people died because of the conflict, some of the victims killed just because they belonged to the wrong community. More details here at e-pao.net

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Typical Meitei house - padded with mud to cool the house, in sharp contrast to the bamboo houses in the hills

The history of Manipur dated back to 33 A.D ruled by a total of more than 109 kings and Manipur was known by different names at various periods in its history, such as, Tilli-Koktong, Poirei-Lam, Sanna-Leipak, Mitei-Leipak, Meitrabak or Manipur (present day).

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Imphal Streets- the traditional dress of the women folk is a sarong called "phanek". It is worn at the waist down to the ankles, or under the arms, covering the breasts and down to mid-calf.
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Women's market Place
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Loktak Lake is the largest freshwater lake in northeastern India. It is also called the only "Floating lake" in the world due to the floating Phundies on it.It serves as a source of water for hydropower generation, irrigation and drinking water supply.
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The Plains of Imphal,

The custom of Imphal is quite different from the surrounding area, the land is fertile and people say that they grow enough to support themselves, the plain area is mostly inhabited by the Meitei People.

Friday, June 22, 2007

Naga Heritage Village - Inside view

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Head hung as during head hunting days, the Naga were headhunters who took heads in battle to ensure the fertility of their fields and to safeguard their villages. Many Naga have now been Christianized and this old practisces have been stopped since then.

An interesting article on the headhunting days in Classical Values
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Village Drum
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Another one with a fancy design
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A totem pole
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Inside of a house with animal skulls
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Bed
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Rice Grinding
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Kitchen
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Thursday, June 21, 2007

Travelling through Kaziranga National Park

A herd of wild elephants on the road through Kaziranga created a traffic jam, these elephants could have probably crushed our vehicle if we had gone any nearer.









A Rhinoceros near the road in Kazaringa

History: protection in Kaziranga dates back to the early 20th century, when Lady Curzon (Mary Victoria Leiter), the charming American first wife of Lord Curzon, then Viceroy of India visited the Kaziranga area in 1904. Kaziranga had already been known for its rhinoceros population. However Lady Curzon saw only hoof marks and failed to see any rhinoceros. It is rumored that the noted Assamese animal tracker Balaram Hazarika showed Lady Curzon around Kaziranga and impressed upon her the urgency of conservation of the wildlife. Concerned about the dwindling numbers of rhinos, she asked her husband to take necessary action to save the rhinoceros, which he did.

Monday, June 11, 2007

Wedding pics